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Ranchers Get Compensation for Damages Caused by Wolves

HAILEY, Idaho (IME)-The Idaho State Wolf Depredation Compensation Board on Wednesday distributed $72,000 in federal funds to ranchers who had sustained livestock losses due to wolf depredation in 2012.

Two ranchers who graze sheep in Blaine County were among those awarded the money. The Idaho Mountain Express reports the eight-member board is composed of county representatives and is part of the Idaho Governor’s Office of Species Conservation.

Office Administrator Dustin Miller said the “confirmed and probable” losses verified by the federal Wildlife Services agency totaled 12 cows, 44 calves, 138 ewes, 66 lambs, two rams and one dog. Those numbers included 25 ewes and 12 lambs lost at the Flat Top Ranch near Carey, as well as 18 ewes and 18 lambs lost by the Faulkner Sheep Co., which is based in Lincoln County but grazes animals on federal land in Blaine County.

The compensation money came from legislation passed by Congress in 2009 creating the Wolf Livestock Loss Demonstration Project. The bill provided states and Indian tribes with $1 million annually for five years, divided equally between compensation funds and money to help ranchers undertake non-lethal prevention activities. The funds were appropriated in 2010 and 2012, but not for 2011 or 2013.

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